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How To Get The Most Out Of Your Existing Content

November 5, 2020
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Do you have old blog posts that have gone a little stale? Need help making older posts fresh and appealing without having to write a brand new blog post? 

Many people think that their job is done once a new post is written and that they can sit back and reap the benefits of blogging for eternity. Unfortunately, that is far from true. Even the most evergreen content needs a little revamping now and then to stay competitive in the search engine and with the latest algorithm updates and content marketing trends.

Updating your existing content can also be extremely beneficial to you and your business if you don’t have the bandwidth for consistent blog content creation. Whether you have limited resources, backlogged content, or are simply looking for faster results. Sometimes analyzing and re-optimizing older content can be exactly what you need to continue increasing your SEO ranking. 

Now, where do you start? Your original post has already been crawled by Google and gained authority, but now it’s time for a content upgrade. 

In this guide we will break down how to refresh your old blog content to increase your search engine traffic with some important content strategies. 

Why Google Likes Updates 

Are you more likely to click into an article from 2014 or 2020? Most would say 2020, which is why Google favors fresh content. Google’s algorithm is constantly changing, and therefore, so should your content. With each new year, comes new data and new search queries. For Google to provide users with the most relevant and timely search result list, Google will rank “fresh” content first. Even if you have evergreen content, it’s important to go back in and update any outdated information. By updating a popular post on your blog, you are signaling to Google that your content is relevant for the search intent. 

When Should You Update? 

Updating your outdated content can be an extremely valuable tool to help increase blog traffic and improve keyword rankings. However, it’s important to understand the best time to revise your content, to ensure it is utilized to its fullest potential. One thing to note is that search rankings take time. You should always give Google enough time to properly understand your content and rank it amongst the competitive landscape, you can then start to strategize ways to elevate your content. It is typically recommended to wait at least 4 months before revisiting old content.  

Relevancy and accuracy are also important factors to consider when deciding the appropriate time frame for revising content. A change in statistics, current events, or studies can affect the accuracy of your content and shift how relevant the information is to your readers. Regardless of your industry or topic, search intent will evolve over time. Updating your content every season or year for relevancy will help you stand out from competing articles and support the increase of your blog SEO rankings by optimizing your content strategy.

How To Identify Which Blogs Are Low Hanging Fruit 

Now that you know why and when you should update old content, it’s time to figure out what to update. The best way to get quick results is by capitalizing on low hanging fruit opportunities. 

What is low hanging fruit and how does that apply to content? Many of us in the SEO world refer to low hanging fruit as keywords ranking on page two of the SERP or at the bottom of page one. By optimizing your existing content for these specific keywords, you have a much greater chance of getting your content to rank higher on page one of the SERP than if you were to create a new post. When you publish new content, it takes Google about 3 months to fully crawl the page and recognize any significant keyword rankings. Those pages are trying to rank for keywords from scratch. When you optimize existing content for low hanging fruit opportunities, you have much less ground to cover to get up to priority positions in the SERP.

How do you find these keywords? Our favorite tool to analyze keyword rankings is SEMrush. This platform allows you to throw in any URL and navigate all of the keywords ranking for that page. (SEMrush has far more capabilities beyond just this, but we’ll save that for another article.) To identify the blogs with the most significant low hanging fruit opportunities, simply drop in the domain, filter the URL by your blog subfolder, and filter keyword rankings by positions #11 – 20 (aka page two of the SERP). 

From there, you’ll have to get strategic on what you’re trying to accomplish. The best keywords to go after are ones that have a high monthly search volume and the right search intent for the piece of content. You want to drive as much quality traffic to the site as possible. Once you have a list of low hanging fruit keywords and blogs you’d like to target them on, you should prioritize them based on expected website traffic gains and relevancy to the brand.  

Content Elevation: Our Process

To properly support our existing content and make sure it is being utilized to its fullest extent, we identify the top-performing articles that have the best opportunities to increase current keyword ranking with high monthly search volumes. Once they are identified, we perform our content elevation strategy to make the older posts even more “premium” and successful. This process includes:

  • Re-optimizing content from a semantic search perspective based on our target keyword and supporting keywords.
  • Bulking up existing content to stand out from competing articles and/or updating for relevancy.
  • Adding in expert quotes or testimonials sourced using HARO software.
  • Creating custom infographics and imagery to support written content and make the article more digestible and premium.
  • Adding CTAs (Call to Actions) to funnel traffic to the appropriate pillar page.
  • Using an internal linking strategy to support other blog posts or landing pages and share link equity.

EAT Guidelines 

One of the key ways in which Google differentiates between high and low quality content is through the lens of E-A-T – Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. These are a part of a broader set of guidelines that Google released in 2015 to share more information around how it views and evaluates content on the web. The E-A-T guidelines are intended to solve the issue of trust on the internet and apply most strongly to the health, wellness, and financial industries. 

To understand what E-A-T means, let’s break down the definition of each further: 

  • Expertise: refers to the author or creator of the content on a page – is that author an expert and is it clear that’s the case? 
  • Authoritativeness: means having broadly recognized authority on a subject – are you a quality source of information? 
  • Trustworthiness: refers to the website, the author and the content – do you provide reliable and accurate information? 

A few specific examples include adding an author-date & byline to articles or content on your site, incorporating author biographies, and citing sources on your blog. It’s crucial to follow these guidelines to ensure your website is well positioned in Google’s eyes and won’t receive any adverse impacts in Organic rankings or performance if not compliant. 

Bring Old Blog Posts Back To Life

If you want to increase your organic visibility quickly, updating your existing content is a fast and easy way to do just that. 

It’s guaranteed to make a big impact on how well your content ranks, and the volume of traffic you get from search engines. 

To begin, add fresh content to your old content once you’ve identified low-hanging fruit opportunities. Look at competing content that is ranking well and fill in the gaps where your existing content misses the mark. Add in additional links and resources, and double-check that there are no broken links. 

Focusing on relevancy is also crucial. You should work to improve the accuracy of all concepts discussed. Analyze featured snippet placements for the main keywords you are targeting, and any relevant related post that can help you ensure your content includes the most essential information. 

Once all updates have been, make sure your updated content meets all the newest requirements of Google’s algorithm updates. 

Give your content another boost by distributing it on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and share with any relevant groups. If you’ve shared it before, share it again and emphasize your promotional strategy on the new findings you discuss.

With these elevation tactics and SEO tips, your existing content becomes a powerhouse of SEO opportunity. What was once old and dying out is now alive and thriving. For more content marketing tips contact a top digital marketing agency such as Power Digital!

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